Passage 80 John Brown (B)
Brown finally agreed to let the train pass over the bridge
and continue on to Baltimore.The train left at sunrise.
By this time, word of Brown's attack had spread to Charles Town
more than twelve kilometers away.
Officials called out the militia, ordering the men of Charles Town
to get ready to go to the aid of Harper's Ferry.
Soon after sunrise, men began arriving at Harper's Ferry
from other towns in the area.
They took positions above the armory and started shooting at it.
The militia from Charles Town arrived
at the Maryland end of the Potomac Bridge.
They charged across,forcing Brown's men on the bridge to flee to the armory
Only one of Brown's man was hit.
He was killed instantly.
Brown saw that he was surrounded.
His only hope was to try to negotiate a cease-fire
and offer to release his thirty hostages,
if the militia would let him and his men go free.
Brown sent out one of his men and one of the prisoners with a white flag.
The excited crowd refused to recognize the White flag.
They seized Brown's man and carried him away.
Brown moved his men and the most important of his hostages
into a small brick building at the armory.
Then he sent out two more of his men with a prisoner
to try to negotiate a cease-fire.
One of them was his son, Watson.
This time,the crowd opened fire.
Watson and the other raider were wounded.
Their prisoner escaped to safety.
Watson was able to crawl back to the armory.
One of the youngest of Brown's men,William Leeann, tried to escape.
He ran from the armory and jumped into the Potomac planning to swim across the river.
He did not get far.
A group of militia saw him and began shooting.
Leeann was forced to hide behind a rock in the middle of the river.
Two men went out to the rock with guns and shot him.
His body lay in the river for two days.
Later,more people were killed.
One was the mayor of Harper's Ferry,Fontana Buckram.
After the mayor's death, a mob went to the hotel
where one of Brown's men had been held
since he was seized earlier in the day.
They pulled him from the hotel and took him to the bridge over the river
Several members of the mob put guns to his head and fired.
They pushed his body off the bridge and into the water.
Across town,three of Brown's men were in trouble at the gun factory.
The factory was built on an island in the Shenandoah River.
the island was now surrounded Militia
Forty of the soldiers attacked the factory from three sides.
They pushed the three raiders back to a small building next to the river.
The three men fought as long as possible.
Then they jumped through a window into the river.
They tried to swim to safety.
Men with guns were waiting for them.
Bullets fell around the three like rain.
One man was hit.
He died instantly.
Another was wounded.
He was pulled to land and left to die.
The third man escaped death.
He was captured and held for trial.
All through the afternoon and evening,
Brown's men at the armory continued to exchange shot with the militia.
Several more on both sides were killed or wounded.
One of those was another of Brown's sons,Oliver
He was shot and seriously wounded.
Night fell.Then,a militia officer,Captain Sinn,
walked up to the small building held by Brown.
He shouted to the men inside that he wished to talk.
Brown opened the door and let him in.
For almost an hour, the two men talked.
They talked about slavery and the right to rebel against the government
Brown was furious that the crowd outside had refused to honor his white flag of truce earlier in the day.
He told Sinn that his men could have killed unarmed men and women but did not do so.
"That is not quite correct,"Captain Sinn said.
"Mayor Buckram had no gun when he was shot."
"Then I can only say I am most sad to hear it,"said Brown.
"Men who take up guns against the government," said Sinn, must expect to be shot down like dogs."
In Washington, President Buchanan and Secretary of War
Lohn Floyd did not learn of the rebellion at Harper's Ferry until after ten o'clock that morning.
The president wanted immediate action.